Apply for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program

While applications for 2018-19 Fulbright grants are due October 6, 2017, it’s not too early to start thinking about applying for 2019-20 grants.

What is the Fulbright U.S. Student Program?

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English Teaching Assistant Programs.  A candidate will submit a Statement of Grant Purpose defining activities to take place during one academic year in a participating country outside the U.S.  For details see

During their grants, Fulbrighters will meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences. Through engagement in the community, the individual will interact with their hosts on a one-to-one basis in an atmosphere of openness, academic integrity, and intellectual freedom, thereby promoting mutual understanding.  Grant lengths and dates vary by country. Please consult the specific country summary for details.

Who can apply?  

Applicants for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program include:

  • Recent graduates: Graduating seniors and recent bachelor’s-degree recipients have some undergraduate preparation and/or direct work or internship experience related to the project.
  • Master’s and doctoral candidates: Graduate-level candidates must demonstrate the capacity for independent study or research, together with a general knowledge of the history, culture, and current events of the countries to which they are applying.

For more information,  please contact Chatham University Fulbright Program Advisers:  Karin Chipman  or Chris Musick

Study abroad during Maymester 2018

Chatham undergraduates –  Chatham field experiences for Maymester 2018 have been approved and are open for applications. The four options are:

Berlin, Germany and Brussels, Belgium: Identity and Social Policy in the European Union with Dr. Rossbach and Dr. Rubin

Costa Rica:  Special Topics in Sustainability with Dr. Saez

Greece: Discovery Course with Dr. Carrillo and Dr. Lettan

Indonesia: Indonesian Field Experience with Professor Biss and Professor Galford

Full program details, applications, fees and prerequisite requirements are available by clicking the links to the programs above.  The application deadline for MM 2018 programs is 10/16/17.   Please contact with questions.


Speech for Equality: Have You Ever Asked Yourself What It Would Be Like If You Couldn’t Marry The One That You Love?

By Joyce Nguyen, ELP Student

Have you ever asked yourself what would it be like if you couldn’t marry the one that you love?

To be honest, I used to be terrified of gay people when I was a little kid, because my relatives told me that being gay was just wrong. Growing up, I became conscious of what was happening in my life. There was a significant thing that I learned, which was I couldn’t judge gay people because they were living a life that they belonged. There is no one to interrupt our lives; we could live a life whatever we want, but why couldn’t gay people live a life that they were born with?

During the time when I was in elementary school, I saw my friend, who is gay, being abused by another student. At that moment, I realized that I couldn’t watch my friend be abused just because of his gender, and I understood that I didn’t have the courage to see my fellow-creature being unequally treated also. We are all human, not only thinking by our head but also thinking by our heart. Although people all over the world have fought for human rights for many years, there are still some of those people who cannot bear gay people. Aren’t gay people human, too?

Yes, they are. The red blood is running in their body the same as us. They are normal; they are working hard to be parents. When it comes to being able to get a home, earning a place to live, being served by business, they should be treated like anyone else. As ex-president Barack Obama states, “We live in an America where all of us are treated more equally, because visiting hours in hospital are no longer depend on who you are and insurance companies can no longer turn somebody away simply because of who you love.” The knowledge about the LGBT community is and has been understood in the wrong way. Most people think being gay is a mental illness that should be treated by medicine or they need to meet a psychologist to become a normal person. Therefore, education plays an important role to heighten public awareness of the LGBT community.

Imagine that you were born with yellow skin. In everyone’s awareness, people who have yellow skin type are inferior, or have “mental illness”, or “something needs to be cured”. You use a ton of specialist cream to change your original skin into another color that you think could help you look like “a normal person”. You can tell the world that you are an ordinary person now, but you cannot change the fact that you are a yellow-skinned person. Think carefully, it must be extremely hurtful to hide who you are because nobody likes it.

I gave you this example to show that it feels painful, devastating to become someone else and not yourself. Could you imagine what would happen if you get married with someone that you don’t love? I could imagine that it feels awfully dreadful; I will live a wasted life, harassing myself for the rest of my life, watching the one I love from behind, I may want to ask myself just one question “What am I trying for?” Not only will it hurt me, but also the one that I don’t love will also feel awful. Normally, people can’t help who they fall in love with, so it’s unimaginable to say the LGBT community is not allowed to love people who have the same gender.

In conclusion, the LGBT community is not disease; they are trying hard to achieve their dreams the same as normal people. I have a dream that my children will be able to live in a world that I don’t need to tell them please treat your gay friends, your gay neighbors the same as us. Gay marriage becomes common day by day, and we should adjust ourselves to adapt it. It doesn’t feel right to get married to someone that you don’t love. Not only can gay people can feel how much it hurts, but also the normal people can feel hurt, too.

Speech for Equality: Feeling Happy Together with “Buraku” People

By Natsuki Sakagami, ELP Student

In our town, there are deep-rooted problems that have not resolved for a long time. In our town, there are people called “Buraku” that refers to the people who lived in a small area of the town. In our town, there are people who got a raw deal in spite of living in the same town. Why do people discriminate against them? Why can’t we treat them without discrimination?

Let me explain the history of the “Buraku” people.

A long time ago, Japan had the class system to separate people who handle the dead body of people and animals from samurai and common people. In that period, the death and the blood were perceived as dirty, so the “Buraku” people were also perceived as dirty. And unfortunately it had not changed for a long time. This is so wrong. Because they’re just like us, aren’t they?

In Meiji period, however, Japanese government abolished that system to get rid of our disparity, to unify our rank and to treat us equally. After many, many years, finally they are perceived as equal according to the law. Already 150 years have passed since the crass system was abolished. Already 150 years have passed since we should have treated them equally. And yet, even now, why do we treat them as before? Why can’t we stand in the same place? Why can’t we think of them as the same residents? Why do we have prejudice for them? “Do you want to change our future?”

I believe that people who can resolve our problem are only us. I believe that people who can change our future are also only us. I have a lot of dreams which would be enough. For now, I want to fulfil my dream with us. I want you to have same dreams with me. And then we can take our problem away. Our children will spend time together without thinking about the difference. We can go back and forth in our town without thinking about the difference. For now, let’s step into a new place where all people can feel happy together.

Speech for Equality: Would You Like to Make a Fair World Where All People Can Say, “I Love You So Much”?

By Seina Maeda, ELP Student

Have you ever loved someone? Do you have someone who you care about? I’m sure that all of us will answer yes, and I also say yes. It is natural to be attracted to someone even if the person is a man or a woman. However, there are people who cannot say “I love you” in a loud voice, because some of us reject them and do not allow them. They are lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgender individuals. Do you have a friend who is a left-handed person? Do you have a friend who has type AB blood? And then, do you have a friend who is LGBT? The number of people who recognize themselves that they are LGBT is the same number of left-handed people and people who have type AB blood. How many of us know this fact? Probably, most of us do not know about that, and we think that the number of LGBT people in Japan is not so high. The reason why we do not recognize the number is large is that we created the society in which they cannot mention they are LGBT easily.

There is one group who tackles the issue of suicide among LGBTs. According to The White Ribbon Campaign, sixty percent of the students who are tormented for their gender identity have attempted to commit suicide. Most of them have doubts that they are little different from other students when they are from thirteen to fifteen years old, and some of them cannot go their school and others experience bullying. Sadly, bullies are not only students, but also their teachers. Have you listened to someone say, “He is a boy but looks like a girl”? Have you told your children, “Be a man” or “Play like a girl”? If the boy or the girl is worried about their gender, our thoughtless action and word become invisible knives. As you know, words cut more than swords.

Today people get a better grasp about LGBT people little by little in Japan, but many of them still carry their true color under cover in their heart. We have people who are given up by their family after confiding they are LGBT. We have people who commit corrective rape because their family cannot accept that fact. Do you know these facts? If you don’t know about them, please pay attention to these facts, please think over people around you once again, and please don’t laugh at them.

People often tell their children to respect others, and not to make fun of others. Why do we forget about these things? It is the next generation to change their future life, but it is not them to improve our present life. It is us. When you are going to your company tomorrow, let’s care about our colleagues more than today? Even if we cannot take any action for LGBT people, we can just accept and watch them in our heart. Would you like to make a society where all people can take a walk holding their lover’s hand? Would you like to make a fair world where all people can say, “I love you so much”?

Speech for Equality: Let’s Begin to Walk a Road of Gender Equality

By Nagisa Fujimoto, ELP Student

Dear fellow women citizens and those who want to overcome gender-based discrimination.

Last year, The World Economic Forum proclaimed that Japan was 111th out of 144 countries in The Global Gender Gap Index. The Global Gender Gap Index is an index designed to measure gender equality. I was shocked at the ranking because not only was it our home country but also a country with strong economic power.

I am a student now, so I feel less discrimination against women compared to working women or married women. However, in 3 years I will go into the workforce, and I will probably face some detrimental treatment based on gender. If you are a student like me, you really need to know that even today a lot of women continue to fight for equality. If you are working, you need to think again whether your workplace does actualize equality of women and men. If you are a homemaker, you need to reimagine if you are sharing the housework equally with your husband.

Before I talk about the issue in Japan, I’d like to ask you some questions. Do you have stereotypes toward women or men? Or have you ever felt that stereotypes are obstacles in your life? As a typical example, women should be quieter and submissive, or women should cook and do homemaking. On the other hand, men should not shed tears and should be assertive or don’t have to do homemaking and raise their children. These kinds of stereotypes make it harder for us women to work, or they sometimes make us uncomfortable in our daily life. But also, some men feel stressed about stereotypes toward them. We women tend to expect men to be strong or be good at math, but again those are stereotypes.

In Japan, pay gaps between men and women are widening, and it would be difficult for women to return to their workplace when they got married or delivered a baby. The Japanese government is struggling to fix these problems, but the gap still does not close.

Another remarkable thing is the low representation of women in politics. According to a survey, the proportion of women politicians in global average is about 22 percent while the one in Japan is about 8 percent. I wonder when the first female prime minister will be elected in Japan.

We need to think not only about the workplace issues, but also domestic ones. In Japan, a division of labor by gender is still strongly rooted; men work outside and women work inside. This idea is also a stereotype, but it is not rational and fair for both women and men. It is sad that we are assumed what we must do by our gender.

I hope that women keep seeking gender equality and do not abandon the hope for it. Gender equality means that we have a right to be provided various opportunities in life regardless of our gender and we should be able to achieve opportunities for self-realization.

Let us aspire to be whatever we want to be. We can be a doctor, a politician, a scientist, police officer, and a lawyer. Let us speak out if our boss runs over us because we are a woman. Let us say to our husband to become more active in caring for our children. Some women strike a balance between child raising and work, but it is mentally and physically demanding and they often need the assistance of their husband. Let us ask our husbands to cook or make our children’s lunches. No rules exist that the mother or wife must prepare meals. And let’s try to view ourselves as human beings, not only as women or men. Let’s break free from an island of gender segregation and begin to walk a road of gender equality.

Speech for Equality: Going Hand in Hand Together with People Living with HIV

By Rumi Horibe, ELP Student

Do you know what day December 1st is? It is “World AIDS Day.” And it is an international day for people in the world to commemorate people who died with AIDS and support people living with HIV. Wearing a Red ribbon means you have no bias about HIV and AIDS.

By the way, how much knowledge do you have about HIV? Some people may have the following prejudices:

It infects with a handshake and a conversation with people having HIV. It infects when you enter the same bath or pool with HIV people. It infects when you use the same daily necessities as them such as toilet, dishes, and towels. It infects by getting bit by a mosquito that sucked their blood.

All of these are wrong. There are only three infection routes of HIV: sexual contact, blood infection, and mother-to-child transmission. So, what I want to point out is “HIV does not infect by contact in daily life”. Even if someone is infected with HIV, early detection and early treatment make it possible to suppress the onset of AIDS.

However, many people living with HIV in the world still have been discriminated against because of the incorrect knowledge at work, in school, and in the community. Some people are scared of infected people and are looking at them with contempt.

In fact, the place with most discrimination against HIV are medical and welfare places. In Japan, a case which a dental clinic in Kochi prefecture refused treatment for HIV-positive people was widely reported in 2014. Surprisingly, according to the data from 50 countries, it shows that one in eight people living with HIV have been denied healthcare in the hospital. People with HIV have been biased not only by ordinary people but also by medical personnel.

Moreover, it is thought that the socially vulnerable including black people, gay, transgender, drug users, and sex workers are the main infected persons. Some people seem to regard HIV as the result of evil and corrupt life. In 2013 in Japan, a man who had been doing job hunting honestly confirmed that “I had HIV” in an interview because he was worried that other people might be infected through injuries. Then, the person in charge of the interview asked mercilessly, “Why did you get HIV?”, “Are you a gay person?” No matter how many times he explained “if I continue to drink medicine, AIDS will be suppressed”, he could not get an understanding. “I felt frustrated and I never forgot that cold gaze.”, he said.

In this way, many HIV people have been taken away from human rights due to wrong knowledge and prejudice. They are suffering not only physical pain, but also mentally.

Do you know these facts?  Let’s help people with HIV together.

Everyone has equal rights to live freely and humanly. Everyone has an equal right to take the same treatment in the hospital and get a job. I want to insist again, “HIV has never infected by contact in daily life.” Let’s spread correct knowledge about HIV and fight against biases of HIV.

Also, let’s not forget the date of December 1st. It’s time to unite together with wearing a Red ribbon. It’s time to give a hand to people with HIV and help them from mountains of despair.

I hope December 1st will be a more important day for us to consider HIV and AIDS. With a Red ribbon, I think we will be able to go hand in hand together with people living with HIV.

Speech for Equality: A First Step to Build a Good Relationship with Zainichi Koreans in Japan

By Chika Kitaghishi, ELP Student

“We all are equal, regardless of race.” These words were always kept in one great Japanese man’s mind some 70 years ago, who worked in the Korean peninsula in the period when Japan ruled Korea and the humanity of Korean people were looked down on so badly. It has been 72 years since Korean people were freed from the empire of Japan. However, we, Japan and Korea, still have some conflicts over historical and political issues. Today I want to bring you to see one aspect of Japan, which is about Korean residents in Japan. They are called “Zainichi Korean.” I believe we, the young generations, need to handle these fragments of what the war left behind.

Firstly, let me briefly explain what made Zainichi Korean not want to go back to Korea but to live in Japan. While Japan had ruled Korea from 1910 to 1945, most Korean farmers had no choice but to move to Japan in order to raise their living standards. After the moment, when the Asia-Pacific War was about to begin, the Japanese government began to force a lot of Korean people to move to Japan. They were the bondages of seriously hard labors. Some Korean men were even forced to join the Japanese Army. On the one hand, some Korean women were forced to serve as sexual partners for Japanese personnel. They were called “comfort women,” which is now one of the most controversial issues between us, Japan and Korea. The number of such Korean people is estimated to be about 60 million. After Japan surrendered, most of them fortunately could go back to their own country, Korea, but some could not. One of the reasons for this is that their descendants who were born in Japan did not have a command of the Korean language. What was worse, the Japanese governments restricted them from taking property out of Japan. Therefore, they could do nothing but to keep living in Japan. That is how some Korean towns were born and then gradually evolved as good places for Korean BBQ over Japan.

However, their struggles of this dark history haven’t actually ended. Zainichi Koreans have been struggling with unequal treatment. Over these recent years, they have suffered from hate speech by an ultra-right wing party which does not tolerate privileges for Zainichi Koreans. Korean people are scared by their abusive, discriminatory, and intimidating words.

The saddest factor for me was, as Zainichi Korean is categorized as the minority, we are not just the majority, but the silent majority. Have you ever happened to see this news on TV? The news always showed the right-wing party doing hate speech around Korean Town and at the same time, they also showed Japanese people just staring at them from a distance or passing by without any interests. We are too apathetic about this issue our country has. Superficial knowledge can just sweep this tragedy of Zainichi Koreans. Sadly, however, at the moment, Japanese school doesn’t provide this modern history class as a mandatory class. I think learning about them is the first step to a better understanding of Zainichi Koreans and to change the stereotypes we might have.

We all first have to know the implications behind this issue.

We all need to take actions to make a better place for each other.

We all need to step into a different community from our own.

We all need to be advocates for each other.

What is wrong? What is right? We will find out when we try to learn about it.

Beyond all the historical and political issues, there is always something we can do to build a good relationship with Zainichi Koreans. I believe what makes people happy is the intimacy we have for each other. I hope more of us take a close relationship with them.

Graduation Speech: Improve English and Deepen Knowledge We Need to Be a Person

By Natsuki Sakagami, Joyce Nguyen, and Chika Kitagishi, ELP Students

Conversation Hour, Summer 2017

Good afternoon, our beloved teachers and international friends. We’re Natsuki, Joyce and Chika. It seems like just the other day we were awkwardly going inside the classroom. I cannot believe how time flies so fast. We feel very accomplished to complete the summer ESL course. We all came from different places and overcame so many things together. However, we cannot forget that it is all thanks to our experienced, sophisticated, and energetic teachers here at Chatham University. Today we would like to express our gratitude to all our teachers, Ms. Sylvia, Ms. Linh, Ms. Mina, and Ms. Trisha.

Firstly, Ms. Sylvia, we really appreciate all you gave us. You have always given us a lot of useful tips such as American culture, slang words, and some sites where we can study English ourselves. Actually in the beginning I did not have much confidence in speaking English in your class, but you always praised me when I said something in the class, and created a comfortable and enjoyable atmosphere, so I was be able to be confident. You are so kind, and we feel you are like a real mother to us.

I would like to say thank you to Ms. Linh, because she has helped me a lot since I first came here. It was particularly an incredible moment for me when I realized I would be taught by a Vietnamese professor. Whether she remembers or not, the first question she asked me was “Are you getting used to eating American food?” I was truly moved by her understanding for a completely new student like me. As we see her having a command of English which is not her first language, she showed us the possibility that we can succeed in learning language.

Next, we would like to appreciate Ms. Mina. Thank you for giving us a lot of homework that made us stay up late, but we know that you always believed in our potential. All the assignments and work in class were very challenging for us; however, it definitely made our skills improve and we feel confident about moving forward on to the next semester, thanks to you. You were always caring about us individually so that we could feel like we can always count on you. We thought of you not only as a greatest professor, but also like a sister we can always feel free to talk to.

Finally, I’d like to thank Ms. Trisha. I’d like to say both sorry and thank you to Ms. Trisha. Sometimes we froze in the class, especially when you taught us how to quote from the articles. We even often moaned like children, complaining about how long we have to write in a final essay. However, you always kindly accepted all of our complains and crazy ideas, like writing an essay about Twinkies. It is not too much to say that all the funny stories you gave us to wake us up were the highlights of this summer course.

Ms. Sylvia, Ms. Linh, Ms. Mina, and Ms. Trisha, we cannot thank you all enough about everything you have done for us not only to improve our English, but also to deepen the knowledge we need to be a person of the world. It is the end of the summer semester, however, and at the same time, it is the beginning of a new stage again. Chatham international friends, let’s promise to all our greatest teachers here that we will grow up more and more to be someone who can make them proud of us! Thank you very much.

Graduation Speech: New and Life-Changing Experiences

By Seina Maeda and Mohammed Alsharif, ELP Students

Orientation, Summer 2017

Hello everyone, we are Seina and Mohammed. Before starting our speech we congratulate all of you on graduating from the ELP. I hope you had life changing experiences. Because we did.

At first, I am going to talk about my experiences. This is my first time to come to the U.S., and everything was a challenge for me, especially when I spent my time outside using English. When I went to a restaurant, I was very nervous not only because I did not know how to order a dish but also because I could not imagine what kind of dishes written on the menu. What is that? How can I order it? What is a tip? I had many questions in my mind. Moreover, shop assistants spoke very fast in English. I could not understand them. One day, I went to Starbucks and I ordered one tall Caramel Frappuccino. Before I ordered it, I practiced how to order it in my mind like this, “Okay, I just say ‘Can I have tall Caramel Frappuccino?’ and I told myself I can do it.” And then I was served two tall Caramel Macchiatos. I didn’t know what happened, and I was very shocked because my English skill did not work. But I didn’t care about these mistakes, because I thought that the only way to learn is by practicing and making mistakes. New experiences always make us grow even if they are bad ones. If we keep trying something new, we can learn anything from it.

We can say the same thing about the experience with the ELP. It was not so easy to read and understand American culture, to recognize the grammatical rules, to listen and convey our own ideas, and to compose comparing and argumentative essays. However, most of them were our first experiences. It was natural to feel frustrated because we were trying to improve. Fortunately, we had an amazing learning environment which simplified all challenging tasks. Moreover, studying at Chatham enhanced our English skills and our information about American culture. We met many friends who are from other countries. The reason why we kept trying regardless of the adversities that we faced is to prove to ourselves that we can overcome our weaknesses. We can develop confidence if we keep trying something. How many points would you give yourself? Keep experiencing new things and give yourself a hundred points. These outstanding experiences and stories will last in our memories for the rest of our lives, but in the meanwhile, we should prepare ourselves for the next step. Some of us will go to the next level at Chatham and meet new friends. And some of us, like me, will pursue a master’s degree in information system management and some will pursue their dream job anywhere in the world. Whatever we are going to do we are going to face various adversities. To overcome any life adversities, we need to believe in ourselves. I want to remind you that we have a lot of teachers who believe in us here at Chatham. As Miss Mina always says “you can do it guys, I believe in you”. Likewise, I believe in you guys too, so let’s go conquer the world.

Finally, I would like to thank all our wonderful teachers who were patient with us and guided us for the past three months. Thank you Ms. Trisha for your help inside the classroom and for the great time we spent with you outside the classroom. Thank you Ms. Sylvia for enlightening us about the American culture and history, and making our reading class more interesting.  Thank you Ms. Mina for your supporting messages that you gave to us every time and for believing in us to do our best in every task. Thank you Ms. Linh, you showed us how to improve our grammar and to use more advanced academic words. Finally, I would like to thank you my lovely classmates. My time here at Chatham wouldn’t have been so great without you. I hope for all of you a successful future and happy life.